January 14, 2012

Saturday Snapshots: January 14, 2012


"It's faith in something and enthusiasm for something that makes a life worth living." ~ Oliver Wendell Holmes

{One is drawn in instantly to this captivating image of a sophisticatedly dressed 1950s woman who has stopped to have her portrait painted on the street. Neither her eyes nor her mouth is smiling, yet her subtly sombre tone likely has more to do with that fact that she wanted to convey a sense of seriousness in the end image that the artist was whipping up on the spot.}

{Looking rather akin to one of those adorable little girl's birthday cakes in which a Barbie doll is housed in a large frosting covered circular cake, here a young woman pokes her head out from a towering mountain of pink layers as she cruises down the street as part of a 1938 summertime parade float.}

{There is such a sense of sweetness, of young love, and the prospect of the shimmering futures that lay ahead of them radiating from this lovely image of 1920s era couple posing on a classic wooden fence.}

{Looks like we're got a budding fashionista on our hands here! In this heartwarmingly cute colour photo from '55, we get to peak in on Kathy (the wee lass) as she holds up a pretty new plaid dress that she received on Christmas morning - and speaking of nice frocks, I rather like the eye-catching bright pink number the woman behind her is sporting, too.}

{In a photograph that looks as though it could have set the groundwork for a Norman Rockwell painting or the cover of Boy's Life magazine, four kids take advantage of the picturesque autumn weather of 1958 to paddle their canoe serenely across the water - darling little daschund pup in tow.}

{And speaking of dogs, here we see a particularly adorable one being clutched by a 1930s woman (ballerina Helene Kirsova), who also - for whatever reason - is also grasping a bottle of ketchup at the same time. I love her whole look - the cozy winter coat, jaunty neck scarf, timelessly perfect handbag - and the fun quirkiness of this delightful shot.}

{Though I must say, over all, we're being treated to a much kinder winter than usual here in Toronto, I'm still longing for the balmy days of summer and the return of jacket-less weather - a point that no doubt helped draw me to this charming image of a lovely redheaded gal sporting a blue two piece on the shores of Lake Michigan back in 1944.}

{Few things can hold a candle in the cuteness department to a cheerful baby, especially when they're perched in a comfy looking highchair and sporting a sweet little cotton gown like this healthy, happy youngster named Hilda Smith was in 1952. Image used with kind permission from the R.A. Gibson Collection on Flickr.}

{In a scene many of can relate to this wintery mid-January week, a young lad squints against the stark glare of the snow in this charming slice-of-childhood life photo from 1961.}

{There's a sense of artistry to this intriguing 1950s shot which I suspect was not intentional at the time, yet shines through as we look at it now decades on. The dramatic lighting, turned backs, row of shapely gams, and array of fur wraps all add up to something richly alluring and timelessly beautiful.}

{All images above are from Flickr. To learn more about a specific image, please click on it to be taken to its respective Flickr page.}

♥ ♥ ♥

Of all the ongoing series of posts on Chronically Vintage, bar none, Saturday Snapshots was always my favourite. Yet I don't doubt for a moment that some of you, dear readers, may not even be familiar with this particular post (in which ten real world vintage images are coupled with a poignant quote). For you see, the last edition of Saturday Snapshots appeared all the very long way back on November 27, 2010.

Nearly fourteen months ago, yet it in so very many powerful ways it feels like a decade, perhaps even two have lapsed since the chilly November day when I last composed a post in this series. To say that I have missed gathering vintage images that speak to my soul, inspire my daily life, and teach me of the past, to pair with someone's meaningful thought about a particular faucet of life, would be a phenomenal understatement.

Silly though it may sound, I've pined to create a Saturday Snapshots posts for many months now, but held off, promising the act of doing so to myself as a way of celebrating the New Year. With 2011's Vintage 365 project now behind us, there is more time and greater energy to devote to posts such as this, and so, ecstatically, I sat down this mid-January evening, eyes smiling like shooting stars, to revive a treasured posts series.

Civil War vet, Supreme Court Justice, and markedly intelligent man, Oliver Wendell Holmes' words so eloquently and succinctly sum up one the key ways I've always tried to live my own life - just as I suspect a great many people have throughout the ages.

So often we make life unnecessarily complicated or lose sight of the simple joys around us, and as they vanish from our line out sight, so too do our enthusiasm levels often plummet sharply. Holding onto faith - in whatever or whomever brings you comfort and fosters a sense of hope - and greeting each day with vim is one of the finest gifts we can give to ourselves, especially when things may seem intensely rocky or bleak.

Make these points cornerstones of your existence and you'll find, as I have over the years, that when all is said and done, the highs will always outshine the lows.


  1. I love old photos-love the stories that photos can tell. For most of my life when I would look at photos of my mother I would study every inch of her and wonder what she was thinking when they took that picture. Its so great to enjoy the photos of others too and not forget that they too had lives and loves. I hope you continue to do this..I love it!! xox

  2. Great pics!!


  3. thanks for sharing these photos. they're just lovely!